The 2011 Best of the West poll comes out Sunday morning. For those of you online at 12:55 a.m., you can see it then.
You will notice there are some close numbers in a couple of categories. When this happens, I double check the numbers and run it through the computer's program a second time just to make sure the right people are in the right places. The closest voting was in the Top Executive category. Tr-City's Bob Tory was at 60.2 percent, while Portland's Mike Johnston was at 60.02. This was the difference of a fourth-place vote (which is worth one point, then the percentages kick in).
Spokane's Tyler Johnson won four categories, and I have to admit, he is worthy of every one.
For those of you (all 172 of you, which I believe is poll record in The Red Light District) who offered up your opinion on the Toughest Player, Sena Acolatse is the actual winner. There were 59 of you who guessed correctly.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Tri-City Herald
I have to give credit where credit is due — when you look at the poll online, you will see photos of the winners and nicely constructed categories. This is the work of Jeanie Jensen in our Interactive Media department. I would be lost without her on this and many other things. She also works her magic so I can offer polls on my blog.
In the Eastern Conference, three teams already have punched their ticket to the playoffs — Saskatoon, Red Deer and Kootenay. Saskatoon leads the East with 90 points, while Calgary is at the bottom with 38 points.
In the Western Conference, Portland has a 32-point lead over over Seattle, which has 16 games remaining. Another Seattle loss and the Winterhawks clinch a playoff spot (like they won't get one anyway). If the playoffs started today, the Americans would open with Kelowna.